tv Andrea Mitchell Reports MSNBC May 5, 2010 1:00pm-2:00pm EDT
this. obviously officials want to plug the gaps. first of all, he pays in cash. why doesn't that set off all sorts of red flags. >> actually, paying in cash in and of itself is not necessarily a red flag. i know there's kind of a conventional wisdom when you pay in cash it's a sign of something. >> pay in cash a one-way ticket to duh bubai? >> again, not necessarily a red flag. >> why isn't it? >> a lot of people pay cash for a lot of different reasons. that in and of itself would not have necessarily caused him to be pulled. >> let's talk about the gap between his name being put on the watch list, the no-fly list, as a result of very, very good nypd and fbi police work. then the fbi in tailing him lose him on the way to jfk. they haven't explained that. everyone's trying to sort of quiet that down. but they lost the suspect. >> i've been involved in law enforcement for probably 25 years. and the fbi is a great organization. but it's not a perfect
organization. and there have been times historically that the fbi loses somebody in a surveillance as does every police department. this is the reason why we have the system we have. we create layers of defense. there are a number of things, a number of points at which you can catch somebody. in this case, because of that, we did catch the person. and it's a recognition that there's no perfection, and therefore you build a series of defenses. and that's what gets the job done. >> why was he permitted by the airline to book the reservation if he'd already been put earlier in the day on that no-fly list. >> this is a flaw in the current configuration of the no-fly list which is in the process of being corrected. for a number of years we fought for a program called secure a flight. which would take the responsibility for implementing the watch list from the airlines to tsa and the government. >> the airlines fought you on this. >> the airlines fought us on this for years. happily, about a year ago, actually two years ago, we got this done and we started the
process. so it is under way. when that job is completed, and i think it will be completed by the end of this year, we will no longer have the problem of the airline not reacting quickly enough when something gets on the list, because they don't have a continuous update. >> i've got to ask you, you know, i know you are a former official. you're no longer in charge. we've always asked the current -- we will be asking current officials. but how is it possible that you started this process two years ago. it still isn't changed. we're told it's not going to be fixed till the end of the year. why does it take so long to switch the responsibility from the airlines to government officials? >> because the actual mechanics of implementing it turn out to be very complicated. you have basically i.t. systems. you're bringing together information about people getting on airplanes, manifests, and the watch lists. because, for example, there are a lot of change that occurs even up to the last minute when people fly it has to be continuously fed into this system. you have dozens of airlines.
so you've got to integrate all the data from all the airlines and bring it into a central place where it can be matched against all the data from the u.s. government officials. and anybody who's worked with building a complicated i.t. system knows it's very complicated and takes time. i will say this, andrea. we should have had security flight years ago. i have to say, the airlines fought it because they didn't want to bear the expense of reconfiguring the system to get -- to move the data from the airlines to tsa. that's why we've had so much delay. >> speaking for people who fly all the time, speaking for americans, we spend a lot of money on intelligence. we spend a lot of money on that national counterterrorist center. i can't believe, frankly, that the u.s. government doesn't have computers capable of integrating all the information, all the data from these computers. the u.s. government has the kinds of computers and program predator zones to go over pakistan and target -- >> the problem here is, it's not our system that's the problem.
the airlines, each of the airlines has its own system. some of the airlines are -- have better systems and have worse systems. you have literally dozens of different systems to have to all be integrated into a single system that will work seamlessly. frankly, some of the airlines don't spend very much money on their systems. so they've been a little bit laggard in getting the job done. this i have to say is a case where frankly the private sector, i think, has been the obstacle in terms of completing this job. >> the question that ray kelly and mike bloomberg were asking at a homeland security hearing in front of joe lieberman and sidney collins today, how does a guy who's on the terror watch list have a gun parked in his car at jfk, how does he have all these weapons? >> well, first of all -- >> why does our law permit this? >> he was not on the watch list until monday. so i don't know -- >> that's another whole question. >> i don't know when he acquired the weapons. nor am i at this point aware at what point he did anything that would have brought him to the attention of the authorities. everyone would like to believe,
andrea, that there's some perfect way of knowing people who have evil in their hearts. but the fact is until somebody says something or does something or acts in a way that becomes visible, we can't know what's in people's heads. so in this case you have a person who had no record. an american citizen. they're entitled to buy a weapon. nothing that apparently came to anybody's attention until the weekend. unfortunately, this is the kind of perfect mold for terrorists. that is why they're recruiting people who are -- you know, have clean records, are american citizens, have lived in america. because they want to take advantage of that cleanliness as a way of evading our defenses. >> now, i'm told that top officials are really looking at his connections to a variety of pakistani organizations. either loosely affiliated organizations, there's a lot of overlap, one in particular is the pakistan taliban. one theory of the case i'm being told is looked at based on his
interrogation, this guy comes over. he's a u.s. citizen. pakistani national. but u.s. citizen. he's got a passport. they don't trust him right away. they think he could be a plant. they don't imbed him, they don't give him lots of training, they don't give him the secrets of the al qaeda operation or the -- if this is the case, pakistan taliban, their organization. but they give him just enough, and they throw him back out there and say, okay, do what you d. if they get lucky, if he's smart, he'll do some harm. he'll kill americans. but they don't have any responsibility for him. and he can't really give up a whole lot of information about their operation. >> i think that's exactly right. i think you have to recognize a couple of dynamics at work. first, they are concerned about our penetrating them. i know they're very anxious about the fact that people might be working with them who have been used to target them. that's a concern. at the same time, an american citizen is too good an opportunity to be -- to be missed. so they may not bring him into the central core. he may not be used for the kind of plan that's very
sophisticated like a 9/11 or an august 2006 airline plot. but they're more than happy to give him some basic training, send him out and hope he succeeds. i think we're going to see more of this. because they're going to use an all of the above approach to carrying out terror attacks. they'll still try to get the big attack. but they're perfectly happy to use opportunistic possibilities in order to carry out an attack with a one or two-person team. >> michael chernoff, former homeland chief, thank you very much. coming up next, new york lawmakers asking congress for more money to fight terror. kelly o'donnell live from capitol hill. and later, new york senator kristen gillibrand joins us live here. plus the pakistan connection with nbc news terror analyst roger cressey. [ female announcer ] new purefitness...
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and our big story today, the investigation into faisal shahzad and the plot to bomb times square. nbc's capitol hill correspondent kelly o'donnell and nbc news terror analyst roger cressey. let's talk about the homeland security hearing today. senator graham talking about not only the issue of guns but the question about what mayor bloomberg and commissioner ray kelly wanted, which is some control on these guns on people on the watch list. let's listen. >> i've got a lot of concern that this is not going in the right direction, because we're dealing with a constitutional right. and i am very concerned about our gaps in our defenses. maybe i'm not making a good
argument here to you. it makes perfect sense to me that losing the ability to loan a gun which is a constitutional right, using this list as a way to construct it is unnerving as best. >> kelly o'donnell, mike bloomberg and ray kelly are not going to get anywhere with this senate, this united states congress on gun control. >> reporter: what they did get is, of course, a lot of acknowledgment for the quick work that was done in new york. but this is a narrow issue. and it's interesting, because this hearing was scheduled long ago. and it really ties into a very current and critical moment with what's happened in the last several days. so the question is, if you are on a terror watch list, can the federal government step in and prevent you from buying a weapon when it goes through the typical process of having those background checks? at present the answer is no. they may identify it. and they may be able to watch that person. and we've been told today that more than 1,100 times between 2004 and 2010 that has occurred. someone identified on a watch
list being able to purchase a firearm in the united states. they were not able to tell us if there is any tie between any of those persons who then go on and get accused of actually committing some act of terror. democrats senator frank lautenberg and pete king of new york and new jersey wants to try to tighten this. as you heard lindsay graham who's an expert on a lot of these issues because he served in the air force as a lawyer and a jag and has studied a lot of this, gun issues are tough. so they've highlighted an issue. there's a lot of concern from the conservative side about the fact that united states citizens could be in a situation where they would not be able to get a gun. we also know that there are circumstances that already exist where there are restrictions on the second amendment. when people have had mental problems or if they're a felon, those kinds of things. this is a new area where they're trying to tie potential terrorists, people on watch lists, to limiting gun access. it was certainly a way to air it out today. but far from being able to resolve this kind of issue.
andrea? >> the chairman of the committee, joe lieberman, kelly, also suggested that he thinks it's time to strip the -- to strip someone who's under such a watch list of their citizenship. we heard john mccain saying earlier today that there should not have been the mirandizing. so there's going to be a lot of focus on what some critics of the administration are going to be saying, republicans are raising a whole lot of issues. >> reporter: all about how you would then -- if someone is a naturalized citizen as was the case in the times square incident, could you pull away the citizenship to deny them some of the rights that we as american citizens would have. that's part of what is prompting lieberman's comments. and if you were even a natural born citizen and commit what they said could be an act of treason, would you then forfeit your citizenship benefits. and there was a discussion today that -- went into the fact that the citizen could be determined to be an enemy combatant, a classification that gives the government some different
avenues to go through prosecution. so these are really tough issues because they go right to the heart of the constitution and right to current day events that have everyone on edge. andrea? >> kelly, thank you very much. roger cressey, let's talk about shahzad's links to pakistan. because there's more and more indication. they don't have hard evidence, obviously, but more and more indication that he was not a lone wolf. >> i think that's right, andrea p p the fact he's admitted to going to a training camp in waziristan, that's not some outward bound boy scout event. what we still don't know, i believe shahzad is going to admit to it and we'll be able to confirm it, was he directed or was he inspired? once we get that we can determine was it pakistani taliban, was a combination and mix of cal btaliban and al qaed. it's going to be an important question. i still think the bigger question is when was he radicalized and why was he radicalized?
was he coerced into doing this? did he do it because family members told him to do it? was he radicalized because of u.s. policy? there are multiple possibilities. we're going to find out from shahzad when he finally talks. >> or economic concerns. let's talk about the possibility that he was both inspired and directed. >> mm-hmm. >> so he becomes radicalized. he goes back to pakistan. as we've seen, the uk has dealt with this a lot, of pakistani nationals who return home every summer and go to these radical camps. if this is the case here, this is going to create a lot of other domestic questions and political questions that are going to be very troubling for our society. because you have so many millions of pakistani -- ethnic pakistanis here in the united states who are really wonderful parts of the texture and vie
bransy of our society. here you've dwot got a guy like this who goes back and tries to join up, let's say. they say, here's an opportunity. we've got a guy with a u.s. passport. we can use him. we don't have to trust him. we don't have to give him the secrets of the temple. but let's send him back. >> i think in the past al qaeda and like minded organizations have done talk down talent spotting. finding people, bringing them in, training them and sending them on. >> deep imbedding. >> deep imbedding. 9/11 is a perfect example of that. then the evolution for the london bombings 7-7 where it was a little bit of bottom up working with al qaeda and then working with others. this might be pure bottom up where he decided to go there, radicalize for a variety of reasons and then was given the training. i think the training question is fascinating. we're all asking ourselves, why was he trained so poorly? why was his trade craft so bad? if he was trained by the real infrastructure, they know how to build bombs that work. it's one of two things here. either shahzad was really bad
student like we talked about before, or maybe the impact we have had in destroying the infrastructure inside pakistan through the predators and the pakistani military has had an impact. simply put, we've been killing a lot of the professional trainers in explosives and the like. the people they're now putting in may be not as capable. maybe that's why shahzad couldn't get this bomb to work. >> really interesting stuff, roger. thank you so much. up next, politico's john harris on the powerful house democrat who's not going to seek re-election. send me your thoughts. find me on twitter at michelle reports. this is "andrea mitchell reports." you stood in the basemt gathering dust while i, sneezing, itching eyes kept you from our favorite stream. the one that runs through a field where pollen floats through the air. but now, with the strength of 24-hour zyrtec® to relieve my worst allergy symptoms, indoors and outdoors... let's go before the fish stop biting. they won't wait for us. but that's okay. zyrtec® is the fastest 24-hour allergy medicine. today, we battle wits with the trout.
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in chief, joins us now. john, this was a surprise. >> yes, it sure was. he's been an institution up there. but he was an institution the people felt was going to be around for a while longer. very close to house speaker nancy pelosi. puts a tough district in wisconsin in play for the republicans. >> obey's still speaking now. this just happened. so we want to just show you that he's still explaining his reasons. primary challenge, was that one of the issues? >> i do -- david rogers who covers appropriations up on the hill for us i think first broke this story and is close to obey. he thinks that this is really more of a personal decision rather than a political one. certainly the politics do figure into this. his poll ratings back in the wisconsin district are a little tough. i do think the personal dimensions probably more. he was friends with john murtha who recently passed away. also charlie wilson of texas.
both of those guys only five or six years older than obey is at 71. i think that had obey thinking, gosh, what do i really want to do with my life? what am i doing here? he was first elected in 1969 to take the seat by melvin laird who went on to become defense secretary in the nixon administration. that gives you just an idea of four decades, more than four decades he's been a player in washington. >> and it would take david rogers to really get to the bottom. he's such a sup pesh reporter. congress members, they're people, too. not always just politics. people are affected by these changes, especially what happened with jack murtha. let's talk about immigration and the digging you've done. you've read "the new york times" poll on immigration. what is your take away from all that as to whether the immigration law in arizona is actually a threat to republicans or actually could hurt -- could help republicans and hurt democrats? >> well, andrea, i really think it's both those things.
people really have been focused largely on the threat, the long-term threat that the immigration issue poses for republicans because hispanics are a growing voting block. this makes them -- measures like this make them hostile to republicans. but in the near term, jonathan martin took a good look at this this morning, in the near term the evidence is it helps republicans. various polls put this well over 60%, in some cases approximately 70% in the districts that are really most at play in the south and the midwest in 2010. so short term, and i think people have overlooked this, it's potentially a big political plus. >> a big political plus in the mid-term elections, even though down the road it will undermine the strength of the republican party if they lose the hispanic vote long term. >> that's right. >> really interesting stuff. thank you very much, john harris. >> thank you, andrea. coming up, riots are breaking out in greece as fears over the debt crisis are sending
gecko: ah, i still have nightmares. anncr: geico. 15 minutes could save you 15% or more on car insurance. right now on "andrea mitchell reports," president obama signing a new bill that gives more help to veterans and their families. the care givers and veterans health services act expands health care services for veterans and also expands benefits and training for caregiver. let's watch the president. >> -- the military bases and communities, our obligations must include a national commitment to inspiring military families. the spouses and children who sacrifice as well. we have a responsibility to veterans like ted leighton, who
joins us here today with his wonderful wife, sarah. we are so proud of both of them. six years ago sergeant wade was serving in iraq when his humvee was strike by an ied. he lost much of his right arm and suffered multiple injuries, including severe traumatic brain injury. he was in a coma for more than two months -- >> the president, again, signing a bill that will provide more aid for vetter ans and care givers. topping the headlines right now on andrea mitchell reports, as floodwaters begin to recede in nashville, authorities fear more victims will be discovered. 29 people are now confirmed dead throughout the southeast. it will be days before electricity is restored to nashville. in greece today, three people were killed when rioters torched a bank. tens of thousands of people took to the streets to protest new taxes and government spending cuts.
u.s. stocks are reacting as concern grows that the greek crisis will spread across europe and beyond. republican senator judd gregg serves on the banking committee and joins us from capitol hill. let's talk about greece and this contagion that is likely affecting other countries in europe as well. we see that the euro fell below 130 for the first time in more than a year. what concerns do you have as someone working on all of this on the hill? >> i think we all should be very concerned about what's happening in europe. the domino effect. they've got a serious problem there in that these nations are all tied into the euro, but they all have different economic structures and deficit structures. and so you have greece, which is essentially an insolvent country, portugal with serious problems, spain which has problems not as serious as greece or portugal, and ireland
has very serious problems. when they get into these problems, not only do they bring that nation down but they potentially bring a lot of other countries with them. it certainly affects the value of the euro. that's a problem for the world. if the euro and europe isn't strong and robust, they're a place where we sell a lot of goods, they're a place that's one of the critical economic engines of the world along with, o of course, ourselves and asia, china, india. we can't afford to have a europe that's basically imploding on itself over the issue of sovereign debt because the countries have overextended themselves and they can't figure out a way to get out from underneath it. >> here at home -- >> i'm sorry. you might also want to note, andrea, the united states is on this same path. >> i was going to ask you that. >> we're five to seven years from where greece is. >> could we get into this kind of bind ourselves? >> absolutely. there's no question about it. our national debt is going to double in five years, it's going
to triple in ten years. we're looking at a public debt to gdp ratio that will hit around 100%. that's basically banana republic status. that's junk bond status. the implications of it for our ability to pay that debt off and for the world to support us when we're running those types of deficits and debt is very dramatic. and would mean if we continue on the path that we're on today where we're spending so much more than we're taking in and we're allowing government to grow so much from its historic levels, historically about 20% of gdp, going up to 26% of gdp, if we allow that to continue, we're essentially going to pass on to our kids a country which is significantly less prosperous and where the standard of living will go down. >> want to talk to you about wall street reform. there has not been a single vote on any amendment. there are dozens of amendments. the democrats say that republicans, you guys are holding it all up. when are we going to see some progress? there's already been agreement on dropping that $50 billion
prepaid fund. but when are we going to see some progress? is it happening behind the scenes and we just don't know it's happening? >> yes. that's right. and it's unfortunate that people would be saying that there isn't progress being made. in fact, senator dodd just announced on the floor they've reached agreement, he and senator shelby, on one of the key elements of the bill, which is how you deal with too big to fail and resolution authorities so we no longer have any situation where taxpayers' dollars may have to come in to back up a company that got in trouble and took too many risks and becomes too -- and is claimed to be too big to fail. now they'll fail. the taxpayers won't be there to back them up under this language which senator dodd and senator shelby have worked out. it took a few days to do it, but it's done. that's the way it should be done. we should go through this bill. it's got a lot of big issues in it. too big to fail is one. derivatives is another. consumer protection is another. we should go through this bill and do the same thing that's done on the resolution authority and too big to fail where we had
a bipartisan effort by the ranking member and chairman, senator shelby and senator dodd, because this isn't a bipartisan bill. getting financial reform is not a partisan issue in my opinion. it's just getting it right. >> you think there will be an agreement on the derivatives? >> it's hard to say. the bill that came out of the agriculture committee was fundamentally flawed and would do damage to our ability as a nation to create credit on main streets and turn business overseas and the derivatives market go with it. it needs to be substantively changed. myself and senator chambliss are going to -- i think there is fertile ground for bipartisan agreement there. whether we can reach it, i do not know. i'm certainly going to work in that direction. >> so now across the nation, we have good news for party leaders
in washington trying to stall the tea party's momentum. chris cillizza is managing editor of postpolitics.com and author of the fix blog. chris, let's talk about the results last night. >> you know, andrea, it's interesting. there's kind of dueling story lines here. it's a glass half empty, glass half full situation. on the glass half full side for the washington establishment, their preferred candidates for democrats lee fisher, the lieutenant governor of ohio, won the senate nomination. for the republicans in indiana, dan coats, the former senator won the senate nomination. you can look at the glass half empty side. dan coats won with 38%, 39% of the vote. conservatives john haas tet ler and marlin stutsman, two people identifying with the tea party movement took a significant chunk of the vote as well. in ohio lee fisher's opponent had support from the liberal left. she had no money and got about 45% of the vote. a look at politics as a win is a win is a win and nobody's going to remember what their margin
was if they get to september and october and are doing well. the establishment got the candidates they wanted last night in these primaries. was it easy? no. did the candidates emerge a little banged up? absolutely. in the end they got the names on the ballot they want. >> do you see any trends here long term? >> you know, andrea, i think we still have to watch, especially on the right, how influential the tea party is, how influential that movement is. i think we're going to see a couple good tests may 18th, two weeks from yesterday, i think, is going to be really big one in kentucky. you've got rand paul, businessman, happens to be the eldest son of ron paul, former presidential candidate, going against trey grayson, secretary of state. trey grayson is mitch mcconnell's preferred candidate. endorsed him yesterday. rand paul is running literally as the candidate of the tea party. that's a big moment. rand paul is i think their best chance to win a big race with the possible exception of bob
bennett in utah this weekend, also in trouble from the con se servetives. we'll have a couple stories this week. >> when we look at what's going to happen with arlen specter, isn't that race narrowing? democratic primary in pennsylvania? >> if i knew, andrea, i'd quit journalism and go into handicapping full time. quinnipiac poll came out yesterday that showed it 47%, 38%, arlen specter ahead. that's way down from an early april poll that had 53% specter. joe is rising because he's on television. aefs congressman from the philadelphia area. we knew arlen specter's support among democrats was relatively soft after his party switch last spring. the question is can he go from being down -- arlen specter does -- this is a race that's going to be closer than i think a lot of people thought. >> chris, could there be some
blowback from specter's negative ads? both sides have done negative ads. but -- >> absolutely. there could be. look, this the arlen specter's mo. always has been. he raises lots of money. he really does a, depending on how you view negative ads, he does a very good or very bad job of running lots of them. he's been in the senate since 1980. he switched parties. this is the first time he's on the ballot as a democrat. he's got to build the trust factor with democrats. >> chris cillizza, the best in the business. thank you very much. >> thank you, andrea. >> proving once again why we love you. thanks. up next, florida senator bill nelson on the oil spill in the gulf. is bp trying to duck its long-term responsibility? this is "andrea mitchell reports" only on msnbc. >> the ceo of bp has stated that
they expect to exceed the liability cap of $75 million. and when i said, will you be responsible for the economic damages, he said, that is something that we will have to work out in the future. taken w. he recommended citracal. it's different -- it's calcium citrate, so it can be absorbed with or without food. also available in small, easy-to-swallow petites. citracal. a heart attack at 57. that was a rough time. my doctor told me i should've been doing more for my high cholesterol. ♪ you should've listened. you're right. now i'm eating healthier and i trust my heart to lipitor. [ male announcer ] when diet and exercise are not enough, adding lipitor may help. lipitor is fda approved to reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke in patients
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in texas at least two people have been injured in an explosion at a refinery on the city's south side. a truck was unloading when it exploded and caught fire. all 50 employees were evacuated. more than two dozen fire trucks are at the scene. traffic within a mile radius of the refinery is being shut down. you can see those pictures. the last thing they need in that region is yet another explosion, another fire, another problem. oil has already reached the mississippi coast and a shift in winds could soon push back the
slick ashore to florida. bp now says that the cleanup costs will exceed the $75 million liability cap imposed by federal law. lawmakers are trying to raise that cap to $10 billion. democratic senator from florida bill nelson met with bp executives yesterday. he joins us now. senator, thanks very much. what did you hear behind the scenes. publicly they're saying, oh, we'll take care of it all. privately they've not been quite so forthcoming. >> well, it was not the same that was said publicly before. first of all, they admitted that they will exceed the existing law cap which is only $75 million in economic damages. they acknowledge that they're going to do the cleanup cost. but when i said, well, the economic damages could get to be billions and billions of people's lost livelihood, not only fishing but also all the
tourism, and i said are you going to take care of all that? he says, well, we'll work on that. i said, well, it's interesting that the times of london's reporting that you raised this issue with the manufacturer of the blowout preventer that the safety may not work, and you raised that ten years ago. and so i expect, andrea, there are going to be all kinds of lawsuits between all these parties as to who has the liability. that's why we need to raise the cap to $10 billion. >> what are your colleagues telling you? do you have any shot at getting this done? >> as a matter of fact, we started talking about it today as putting it as a part of the very necessary tax extenders bill that we're going to pass to keep some of those tax cuts in place for middle-income people. that's a must pass bill. this fits within the
jurisdiction of the subject matter of the bill. so i think we're going to try to put it on there. >> and what are you being told about the wind shift and the weather conditions and how vulnerable florida's coast is now? >> well, you've been out on the gulf of mexico. and you know that sometimes the wind comes this way and sometimes it goes that way. if the gusher continues, and they can't get this thing capped, and they have to wait another three months of it gushing until they can get a relief well down there to suck the oil out through a different well, you can imagine how much oil is going to go in the gulf of mexico. and no matter which way the wind blows then, it'll start lapping up on to those beautiful, beautiful beaches. >> and i heard t. boone pickens saying on "morning joe" this morning, senator, it's going to take months more than they are estimates if they have to drill
that vertical, that second well. >> well, i can tell you what the ceo of bp said yesterday afternoon. and that is, they've got one relief well that's going down. it's already down to 6,000 feet. they're going to 13,000 feet. but to get down for the rest of it is going to take them three months. then they drill another relief well so they can relieve that pressure by sucking the oil out through those wells and stop the pressure going through the one where the blowout preventers did not work. >> it's a grim forecast. thank you very much, senator nelson. >> it is grim, andrea. and coming up next, senator kristen gillibrand on keeping new york city safe from terrorists, only right here on "andrea mitchell reports." stay with us. [ indistinct talking on p.a. ]
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new york city mayor michael bloomberg and police commissioner ray kelly were testifying today before congress asking for more antiterror funding demanding more cash for the city's midtown security initiative including additional security cameras duplicating what they already have in lower manhattan. with us now new york senator kirsten gillibrand who today announced legislation for long-term funding for securing the city's program. how would this make a difference, how quickly can you get it ramped up, and is there money available? >> well, i believe we need more resources to make sure we can keep new york safe. some of the money we're looking for is to prevent for example a dirty bomb ever being used in new york because there are detection technologies available to prevent that. we want money for more surveillance, you know, we have the capacity for about 3,000 cameras in downtown but in midtown we only have about a hundred. so we need more money to be able to do better surveillance.
we also need money for the police officers. 92% of all the budget we have is used for salaries and at least 120 of those salaries go to counterterrorism. that's the kind of money the federal government should be providing. all tolled i'll be asking for $60 million to cover the additional costs. >> it's extraordinary one of the facts that's come out is that new york city has more police officers in new york city alone than the fbi has employees. we are talking about a huge number of people here who are already dedicated to stopping the bad guys, finding out who's involved. look how well they did. there were gaps in the system, the terror watch list, the airline, the fbi losing the suspect on the way to jfk, but the nypd did its job. >> the nypd has done its job time and time again. they are the greatest force in the world and what they have been able to do is we've had at least 11 terror attempts on new york city since 9/11. and so our police officers need to be extremely well trained, very vigilant, and have done
their job under commissioner kelly extremely well. not only did they handle this case well but they've handled all the previous cases well. so we need those funds to keep our community safe and because new york city is such a terror target, whether the financial sector or the u.n. or any part of new york that is a target for terror, we need to be able to protect those places, our religious institutions, and the real fabric of new york. >> i wanted to switch quickly before we run out of time here to the financial regulation bill. you've been a recipient of money from wall street. you're obviously the senator from new york and that is an obvious connection but do you think that the wall street financial regulation bill is the right approach? what do you want to see amended? >> what we need to do is make sure we reduce the risk and the leverage that was in the system that was part of the causes for the implosion of the financial services sector. the worst thing that could ever happen to new york is another
lehman brother failure, aig failure, or bear stearns failure, and so what my goal is to create transparency particularly in the derivatives market and to have better oversight and accountability so we have a stronger financial services industry so we can stay at the center of the world financial markets. >> thank you very much, kirsten gillibrand, the senator from new york. that does it for this edition of "andrea mitchell reports." tamron hall is up next. tomorrow we'll have general david petraeus. be with us. tamron will have the latest on greece and tomorrow as we say the commander from u.s. central command. this is "andrea mitchell reports" only on msnbc. ♪ [ pop ] [ man ] ♪ just another perfect day
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once again planning to burn off some of that oil. and three bank workers killed in a fire in athens as rioters torch buildings and protest in the streets. the latest developments as tens of thousands of protesters flood the streets of greece. police are calling this man a real life jasen bourn. how he slipped by police and what authorities found inside his upscale penthouse apartment. we begin with new details about faisal shahzad's alleged plan to explode a car bomb in new york's times square. new york police commissioner ray kelly says shahzad, who was living in connecticut, apparently decided in march to put his plan into motion and he also bought a gun. kelly spoke at a senate hearing today in washington. >> he purchased a weapon in march in connecticut and he had it with him in the car that he drove to jfk airport on monday night. so it appears from some of his
other activities that march is when he decided to put this plan in motion. he came back from pakistan february 3rd, 2010. >> shahzad was arrested monday night aboard a flight to dubai. he was apparently able to slip away from authorities watching him at his connecticut home, drive to kennedy airport, and board the flight, even though he had been placed on the no fly list earlier that day. officials say shahzad has been talking freely and has confessed to the attempted bombing claiming he was acting alone. meantime the "new york times" reports shahzad waived his right to a speedy arraignment something that usually happens within 24 hours of an arrest. nbc's ron allen joins us now from the federal courthouse and, ron, is there any new indication when we might see shahzad finally in court? >> reporter: not yet, tamron. it could take a while as you were reporting. the federal government is saying he is providing information. he's talking.
they don't want to break that momentum. they want to get as much from him as possible as you can imagine. there are numerous questions about who may have helped him, how he planned to carry out the entire plot, and they want to keep the process going. the minute he walks into court there is a lawyer involved. the information flow perhaps shuts down. the whole situation changes. so it may be some -- may be a while before he actually comes into a courtroom. >> and, ron, do we know if investigators are looking at any other locations specifically his home in connecticut? we know they were there yesterday. are they still out looking around his neighborhood? >> reporter: well, they're trying to piece together his life here and in pakistan. things apparently changed dramatically for him about a year or so ago. he left a good job. his family, his wife and two daughters moved back to pakistan. apparently his marriage was on the rocks. and that may have been among the issues that set him off. he also had just returned from pakistan, so the authorities are trying to figure out what was going on over there? did he in fact go to a training ?